Epilogue: Citizenship Against Markets
The 1980s are an exciting time in politics. Old orthodoxies are being challenged and new configurations shaped. The diffusion of New Right ideas in Britain and the United States is a manifestation of this turbulence. But political debate occurs within a historical and institutional context — the accumulated experience of a political system and its people as well as that system’s institutions. New Right advocates have attempted to radically reshape accepted practices, charging them with inadequacy in the face of economic crisis. Rather than recognising the important role of the post-war consensus in resolving the profound economic and political crisis of the 1930s, New right proponents have demanded a reversion to an arcane nineteenth-century model of political economy with little applicability to the late twentieth century. But New Right ideas have been articulated within existing institutions many of which embody Keynesian social democratic principles resistant to attack.
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